Mushrooms are one of my favorite things to eat. In Finland, where I was born, mushrooms are everywhere; they add them to dishes at every restaurant and never bother to mention them in their descriptions. Their defense? “Who doesn’t like mushrooms?!” Well, my husband and kids don’t, so I don’t end up using them very often. They have a very distinct flavor and are impossible to hide, trust me… I’ve tried.
Luckily for me, this topic came up last week while out with a group of my girlfriends who, I came to find out, are stuck in a similar mushroom love/hate situation as myself. I’m not too keen on making dishes only I will enjoy, so all I needed was a group of friends willing to eat with me. To please every palette I made this mushroom barley soup two ways. Both of which are delicious. My Aroma Rice Cooker came in handy as it always does. Being able to sauté ingredients then simmer my soup in the same pot makes this recipe a breeze. Next time a craving comes around, I just might make a whole pot for myself!
1 cup of pearled barley
4 cups of chicken broth
1 carrot, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove
2 tsp + 2 tbsp olive oil
4 cups mushrooms of your choice, cut in quarters
1/2 cup cream
salt and pepper to taste
Set your Aroma Rice Cooker to Sauté-Then-Simmer™ and sauté the carrot, onion, celery and garlic in 2 teaspoons of olive oil for 5 minutes.
Add the barley and 2 cups of broth. Close the lid and set to the Brown Rice function. When the cooking cycle has ended, remove the cooked barley and vegetable mix from your rice cooker and set aside.
Using the Sauté-Then-Simmer™ function and remaining olive oil brown mushrooms in batches. Add the remaining stock and your barley vegetable mixture to the inner pot and bring to a simmer.
Season with salt and pepper and add cream right before serving.
Tip: I have a slight preference for a pureéd version of this soup. The barley in this recipe pureés beautifully with the mushrooms and adds body to the soup as a natural thickener. Yum!
Over to You
What’s your version of a barley soup? Share and inspire us!